Organizers of The World’s Premier Bacon Festival No Longer Hoarding Bacon

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Festival Secures a Valuable Partner – Tickets Go On Sale December 29th

"a festival with the mission of improving the enjoyment of all things bacon by providing education, recognition, advocacy and research on behalf of the masses"

On a warm Saturday afternoon last July, while stocking canned bacon on the shelves of a bomb shelter at an undisclosed location, organizers of the 5th Annual Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival, “Baconpocalypse Now: I love the smell of bacon in the morning” began to question whether hoarding was the right thing to do.
“Look guys, we know that fears of the 2012 apocalypse could lead to a massive bacon shortage at any time,” John Tiffany, Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival historian explained. “But what if our hoarding sparks a bacon-buying frenzy that could have been avoided?”
Seth Hall, Chief Bacon Enjoyment Officer, agreed. “John has a point. We can’t possibly purchase enough frozen pork belly futures contracts to feed 4,000 festival attendees without creating panic in the markets and pushing retail bacon prices over $10 a pound.” The room went quiet. Seth continued. “Dudes, we need to look at this problem from a global perspective. I’m talkin’ synergies, accountability, core competencies, a paradigm shift, a Win/Win--” Brooks Reynolds, Chair of the Iowa Bacon Board and festival co-founder, interrupted, shouting, “A strategic partner! We need to go straight to the bacon source and find a pork producer with enough hogs to satisfy our bacon needs for the next 20 years, apocalypse or not.”

One month later, at his Bacon-On-A-Stick stand at the Iowa State Fair, Reynolds couldn’t help but notice a sea of people marching down the concourse wearing black shirts. As the group came closer, the green and red logo came into focus - Iowa Select Farms. “It was like a sign from God,” Reynolds recalled.

As the largest Iowa-based pork producer, Iowa Select Farms was celebrating an employee family outing – 2,200 people in all. Reynolds seized the opportunity to gain an introduction to Jeff Hansen, CEO of Iowa Select Farms. The two exchanged contact information and just last week, Iowa Select Farms signed on as the presenting sponsor of the 5th Annual Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival.

Asked to explain the logic of the partnership, Jeff Hansen, CEO of Iowa Select Farms said, “Look, Iowa is number one in pork production. Our company and employees have always taken great pride in that. So how could all of us at Iowa Select Farms sit idly by while the organizers of the best bacon festival in the world lose sleep over the fears of a bacon shortage? All of us at Iowa Select Farms are proud to support this event and ensure that there is enough bacon to keep the celebration alive.”

With the presenting sponsor for 2012 secured and risks of a bacon shortage avoided, tickets for the 5th Annual Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival, “Baconpocalypse Now: I love the smell of bacon in the morning” presented by Iowa Select Farms are set to go on sale exclusively online at http://www.blueribbonbaconfestival.com beginning at high noon on Thursday, December 29th. The festival will be held at the Varied Industries building at the Iowa State Fairgrounds from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sat., February 18th.

Organizers plan to accommodate 4,000 bacon lovers. Tickets are $45 for general admission into the main event, entitling the holder to a commemorative T-shirt, koozie, a wide array of bacon-inspired delights from various restaurants, unlimited bacon samples at the Bacon Showcase, live music and bacon educational lectures.

Other ticket options include:

  •     $625 for a reserved table for 10
  •     $135 for a general admission ticket paired with a seat at the Bacon Elegance Dinner on the evening of February 15. Due to 2011’s quick sellout, the maximum general admission ticket purchase will be two (2) per order.

For information on how to become a participating restaurant or bacon purveyor, please e-mail blueribbonbaconfestival(at)gmail(dot)com.

About Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival
What started as a groups’ passion for “all things bacon” has evolved into America’s premier bacon festival. In 2001, a group of guys began celebrating bacon during an annual weekend retreat in Spirit Lake, IA. Six years later, they pursued a deeper understanding of their favorite meat by earning “All About Bacon” diplomas from Living History Farms. On March 1st, 2008, officially organized under the Iowa Bacon Board and led by Brooks Reynolds, they went on to found a festival: a festival with the mission of improving the enjoyment of all things bacon by providing education, recognition, advocacy and research on behalf of the masses, everyone, everywhere, all of them. They are serious. Seriously, dudes. Seriously.

About Iowa Select Farms
Iowa Select Farms is an Iowa-based pork production company founded in 1992 by Jeff Hansen, a third-generation family farmer and pork producer. With headquarters in Iowa Falls, Iowa, the company is known for its dedication to producing high quality-pork, which has allowed the company to grow into the largest Iowa-based pork producer. The secret to Iowa Select’s success has been a combination of excellent and dedicated employees – over 900 people in 43 Iowa counties – protecting the environment, being good neighbors and providing excellent animal care.

Facts
What – 5th Annual Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival, “Baconpocalypse Now: I love the smell of bacon in the morning”
When – Saturday, February 18th, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Where – Iowa State Fairgrounds
Ticket Availability – Tickets are set to go on sale exclusively online at http://www.blueribbonbaconfestival.com beginning at high noon on Thursday, December 29.
Competition – Manni Balignasay is the four-time Blue Ribbon Bacon Eating Champion in 2008, 2009, 2010 & 2011.
Bacon Showcase – The popular Bacon Showcase provides individuals with the opportunity to sample some of the nation’s best bacon brands and talk directly to brand reps. In previous years, the following bacon brands have been showcased: Eden Farms, Falls Brand, Farmland, Hormel, Iowa Farm Families, Niman Ranch, Polehnas, Vande Rose Farms and more.
Bacon Lecture Series – The Bacon Lecture Series brings together some of the most brilliant bacon minds providing festival attendees with the opportunity to challenge their bacon knowledge and beliefs. In 2012 a special session will be added to the series to address concerns about apocalyptic survival skills and how to best preserve bacon in preparation for a variety of transformative and cataclysmic events. Past lecturers include: Jonathan A. Campbell, MS with Iowa State Meat Laboratory, Leo Landis, The Bacon Professor, Scott Bush, Templeton Rye Whiskey.
Iowa Bacon Board – Members of this highly esteemed board include: Kit Curran, Seth Hall, Mark Pederson, Marshall Porter, John Tiffany and Brooks Reynolds.
Our Mascot – A furry pig named Blue is the official mascot of the Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival.
Blue Ribbon Bacon Tour – In an effort to promote the Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival around the world, the Blue Ribbon Bacon Tour has hosted events in: Keystone, CO; Reykjavik, Iceland; Phoenix, AZ; Boise, ID; Pittsburg, PA.

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Brooks Reynolds

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